Record numbers for hockey camp

GRAFTON Hockey has claimed a record number of players for the Skill Development Camps.

Junior hockey organiser Kerry Wilsmore said while all impressed there were some real stars on show.

And the numbers would have been even higher if not for previous outstanding efforts.

“We would have had a lot more but Grafton Hockey Incorporated were unable to nominate Thomas Dougherty, Darby Fahey, Brent Russ and Riley Want as these under-15 players made this year’s North Coast Academy squad of 18 players,” she said.

The record number of players that made this year’s Skill Development Camp can be attributed to the high level of skilful hockey players within the Grafton area, having the best hockey facilities in New South Wales outside Sydney.

The commitment and dedication of the many volunteers involved with hockey - which include our various executives, coaches, managers, umpires and tech bench officials – also add to the success.

The Skill Development Camps are held in various venues, depending on the age group that bring together the top 60 to 80 players from all associations in NSW.

NSW Under-16 coach Scott Smith, also head teacher at Grafton High, and renowned Grafton coach Rick Sampson have been putting a squad of NSW Country players through an intense training program in preparation for NSW City-Country matches.

The NSW City-Country matches and the skill development camps are stepping stones to state selection.

Grafton has six NHL players playing for the NSW Waratahs and we believe these talented athletes are probably more advanced at the same age as their local NSW Waratahs heroes that include Scott Garner (Australian under-21s), Brent Livermore (Australian Kookaburras), Peter Kelly and Robbie Green (overseas in France and Belgium respectively on hockey contracts), Nick Russ (Australian under-21s) and Matt Butterini (Australian Kookaburras) who has adopted Grafton.

The lucky players for 2010 are:

  • Under-13 Boys - Sydney Olympic Park: Hugh Cameron, James Kinnear, Mitch Kroehnert.
  • Under-14 Boys - Bathurst Hockey Centre: Nathan Butterick, Jake Crispin, Justin Donoghue, Jacob Purser, Thomas Smith.
  • Under-15 Boys - Bathurst Hockey Centre: Reece Amos, Simon Colgrave, Barney Howard, Sam McCarthy, Harrison Smith.

Wilsmore said the talent base in Grafton is immense and joked there may be more factors in play with the team selection than first meets the eye.

“I don’t know whether it is the Grafton-Clarence River water but we could have included many more to the program, such is our talent base,” he said.

“They will get their chances next time around.”

Location: Bathurst Hockey Centre from April 14-16.

Participants from Grafton Hockey Incorporated: Reece Amos, Simon Colgrave, Barney Howard, Sam McCarthy and Harrison Smith.

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